In Signs of Life, a dense installation of knotted and wound string fills much of Galerie Templon’s New York space. The work of Japanese artist Chiharu Shiota (previously), the solo show transforms the gallery into a monochromatic labyrinth of intricate mesh that ascends from floor to ceiling. Shiota considers the multivalent meaning of the web, from the structure of neural networks within the human brain to the digital realm today’s world relies on.
One of the works features bulging cylinders and dangling threads in red, while another white structure traps numerous book pages within its midst. Created during a two-week period, Shiota envisions the installation as connecting personal memory and the collection of knowledge. “I always thought that if death took my body, I wouldn’t exist anymore,” she says.
“I’m now convinced that my spirit will continue to exist because there is more to me than a body. My consciousness is connected to everything around me, and my art unfolds by way of people’s memory.” The show also includes previously unseen drawings and sculptures, many of which contain quotidian objects that prompt questions about how items become meaningful, sentimental, and precious with use.